In an effective business negotiation, it is essential to take notes in order to have control of the process and keep track of the most important data. Notes will help us improve our influence and persuasion towards the other party.
What to write down on your notes during a negotiation? We are telling you:
1. Specify goals
Your notes should include information on the goals you want to achieve at the end of the negotiation. In other words, writing down the goal you want to reach makes things easier because it helps you not to move away from your interests.
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2. Describe people
In an effective business negotiation, it is crucial to have a list of the people you are negotiating with, so you will not make any mistakes. Include a brief description of each participant, together with their position and role in the negotiation. Did you know that your sales team might need a ‘scorecard‘ for negotiations?
3. Include negotiation styles
If you take notes of the negotiation styles, techniques or strategies used by the other party, you will have a more clear idea of what stance to adopt throughout the whole process and how to interact from the information exchange to the proposition of a solution or agreement.
4. Write down the “noes”…
Writing down all the objections that the other party makes to our proposals will help us debate better, by solving more quickly the cause of the disagreements and not exhausting the trust between the two negotiating sides.
5. … and the “yeses”
It is also necessary to write down that which is agreed on, in order to advance the negotiation process and avoid unnecessarily prolongations. You want to make sure no one forgets the small agreements being reached in the process.
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6. Add new ideas
Negotiations are dynamic and most of them bring up new ideas, issues or proposals that may be subject to future negotiations or even open new ways in the current process. Remembering the many things that can happen in a negotiation is impossible if we don’t check our notes, so be sure to include all the data that may come up during the conversation.
7. Register any diversions
Your notes can be your best ally in certain key points of a negotiation. If you are clear on what has been said or what has been agreed on, your notes can be very valuable in a stressful situation or, even worse, when the other party contradicts itself at some point.
In short, preparation may tip the balance in an effective business negotiation. The more notes you are able to generate and take with you to the table, the more successful will the final agreement be and the more solid the base for future relations with the other party.
What is your key to effective business negotiation?